Sunday, December 31, 2006

The Eve Of The Best New Year Ever!

May peace break into your house and thieves steal your debts.

May the pockets of your jeans become a magnet for $100 bills.

May love stick to your face like Vaseline and may laughter assault your lips!

May your clothes smell of success and not smoke.

May happiness slap you across the face and may your tears be that of joy.

May the problems you had forget your home address!

May 2007 be the best year of your life!

A very Happy New Year to you all!

Blessings as always to you and yours.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Plunge Into The New Year

I've avoided blogging, (or working for that matter) as much as possible over the Christmas Holiday. Feeling the need to relax a bit, I scaled back and only worked on my novel ... Hmmm. Now I feel ... behind. I'm not sure I'll ever feel caught up. I seem to have this ability to be one step behind in my TO DO list. Why is that, I wonder?

Am I a slacker? Hardly. I think I work more hours than I ever have in my life, including the time I was a medical practice administrator. I believe these days it's entirely the fact that I'm more anal in working for myself. I've got to lighten up. I take every email, every phone call, every piece of mail serious and immediate. Michael tells me I've got to not worry if I can't get to it the same day. That folks don't really expect you to answer them "immediately."

But, God knows I don't want any project, any invitation, any person to be left hanging. So, I'm still trying to learn how to let someone else do all the planning, booking, and message taking while I attend to things ... like writing.

It's a never ending process.

So now we're between Christmas and New Years. I'm really looking forward to kicking back and cooking for my friends on New Years Eve. Relaxing, having fun. And in the back of my mind, I'm also anxious for the New Year to start because I've got a feeling this New Year could be the start of something big. This is the week to teeter on the edge, isn't it? Like jumping off a high dive ... you know the thrill of the jump will land you into cool water and if you don't lean too far one way or the other, you won't hurt yourself. I feel like that right now. My toes are over the edge of the board. I'm ready to take the plunge.

I'm just wondering if my suit's up my crack and anybody's pointing and laughing.

Oh well. Time to go answer a few emails and pull my suit down.

Blessings to you and yours.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Have A Merry One!

It's Christmas, 2006 ... where did the year go? I've not blogged much lately ... we've been quite busy this season. Michael and I had last minute shopping and baking to do. We saw the movie "Holiday" ... GO see it ... great movie. Then we spent two days in Atlanta with my sister, Kathy and her family. My parents were also there. She has a large home that's tastefully decorated to the brim! Oh my ... talk about a beautiful home. I'll put some pictures here for you. She's a top realtor in the Atlanta area, but her house is a showcase. And so is her life. She's six years younger, but has been married twenty-five years to her high school sweetheart. They've been dating since they were fourteen!

True, I swear to God.

He was the captain of the football team, she was a varsity cheerleader. I know. Right out of American Graffiti. They have three exceptionally talented children, all blonde haired-blue eyed beauties. Sara ... a graduate from Georgia State and newly engaged and newly employed with a top notch medical company in Atlanta ... Sam ... a junior at a college in Louisiana--full ride football scholarship (he bench presses 300 pounds) ... and Shaina ... thirteen, tall, thin; she doesn't know it yet, but somebody in New York would give her a cool million for her face on the cover of Seventeen Magazine.

I adore them all. And they love their crazy Aunt Pam. But I don't get to see them much, so when I do ... it's usually a party. My brother-in-law, Dave, grilled filet mignon's for everyone ... it seems we ate like Kings the entire two days ... well, hey, we are the Kings! (Kathy and me -- our maiden name ...)

Anyway, the weather this Christmas is not quite white down here in the South. Today is a bit dreary. Rainy, dark, and yet ... the lights are all on in the house, making it a little more cheery. We're expecting company later for food and more fun. We'll open presents and drink a few glasses of wine. Then it'll all be over. Another Christmas gone. It seems we all look for our perfect Christmas. I'm not sure there is such a thing. For me, it's a holiday of such mixed emotion. I don't ever think it'll ever feel right again. But ... we put on our happy face and get through it. I'm thankful to be loved by my family and friends. It's really what it's all about anyway.

I hoped you are loved this Christmas and I truly hope you have a merry one ... no matter your circumstances. Today is a day to forget pain, grudges, heartaches, and calories. The world stands still one day a year ... and relishes the sights and sounds of the holiday. It's not all about food, presents, and tinsel. It's about love ... come down from above, and from those who cannot be with us. It's about love from those who spend the day with us ... It's about making new memories.

Here's to yours.

Love to all this Christmas,

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Have Yourself A Sunny Little Christmas!

Yes, it's Christmas ... but you couldn't look out my front door and tell it by our weather. 70s and sunny. The trees are bare, and there's Christmas decorations all over the place, but watching a few Christmas Shows last night (Home Alone, and It's a Wonderful Life) I realized ... it snows in every one of them!

I've seen very little snow since moving to North Carolina. Only when we make trips north during winter, do I see accumulated snow. I think a white Christmas would be nice, I suppose. To look outside and see flakes collecting on the ground. Christmas always means snow to most of the world.

But for me, if I could control it, it'd last for that one day only. Then poof! Gone.

Do I miss the stuff? No. Our Christmas time in Northeast Ohio was full of the white, wet, stuff. For many, many years I treked through gray days, grayer dirty snow on the highways, deicing my car every morning during November, December, January, February, and March. I don't ski or ice skate. I haven't been on a sled in 40 years. So no. That white precipitation can stay away from my door. If I ever get in the mood for snow during the holidays, I'll travel to it rather than for it to come to me.

Thank you very much, I'll live with sunshine for Christmas for the rest of my days. It suits me just fine.

Blessings to you and yours.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Holiday Eating Tips

This was sent to me recently, I'm not sure who wrote it, but hey ... it's a great guide for the holidays! Enjoy!

1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. Like fine single-malt scotch, it's rare. In fact, it's even more rare than single-malt scotch. You can't find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-aholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later than you think. It's Christmas!

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hello?

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you're never going to see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple. Pumpkin. Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or, if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have SOME standards.

10. One final tip: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. Reread tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner.

"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, totally worn out and screaming, "WOO HOO what a ride!"

Blessings to you and yours.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

E.T. Santa

She was only six years old. Jillian's eyes, green like her mama's, watched me with enthusiasm make Santa heads out of old pantyhose, some cotton, and some thread. I was into crafts in those days. The year was 1982. We lived in a little town called Mogadore, Ohio. It was a kinder, more gentle time. Aaron was in school that day and Jillian had a bad cold, so I kept her home with me ... oh, so many years ago now. I remember this day vividly, because Jilly and I hung around the house and baked cookies then decorated the tree. She stayed in her Holly Hobbie pjs and we turned on some Christmas carols before settling down on the couch with our "Santa craft."

That particular year was the year of stuffed Santas. (It was the 80s, what can I say?) I stuck those awful things on all our packages and on the tree, as well.

"Me too, Mommy." Of course, how can you say no to a brilliant six-year-old, which she was. At that age, Jillian was reading Aaron's second grade books and doing third-grade math. So, I threaded a needle for her, showed her how to use it and said, "Be very, very careful or you'll prick your finger like Sleeping Beauty and not wake up until after Christmas!" Anyway, the child was too smart to buy that line of crap. She laughed at me, as usual. But, darn, that little blonde-headed beauty gave it her best shot.

She worked the needle back and forth and told me not to look. We cuddled up together on the couch that day with our crafts and talked about what she and her brother wanted from the "real" Santa. E.T. lunchbox, E.T. bedspread, E.T. TV trays, E.T. doll!

"All done! Open your eyes, Mommy!" I looked at it. I smiled. I sighed. It had to be the ugliest looking Santa I'd ever seen. And she knew it. I've always said, Jillian's heart has been filled with tears since birth. The child (now a grown woman) could cry easier than eating a Christmas cookie. (She still can.) God knows, I can stand anybody's tears, but hers.

"It's awful ugly, Mommy." The tears fell.

How do you agree with a little girl that's tried so hard? "Well," I said. "I think it's cute. It looks like ... IT LOOKS LIKE E.T. SANTA!" The tears dried up, the smile came back, and all was right with the world.

And so goes the story of E.T. Santa. The movie was just out back then. Everything was all about E.T. for my kids that year. And ever since then, E.T. Santa has been on my tree. It's a memory I'll cherish always. E.T. will be passed down to Jillian, but not before I enjoy it a while longer.

Christmas isn't Christmas, without it.

Blessings to you and yours.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Catch the Spirit

I'm having a wee bit of trouble getting into the mind of Christmas this year. The year has flown by so quickly and we've been so wrapped up in book stuff it feels like it should still be Fall. There's always the added stress of gift giving, holiday cards, extra cooking, parties -- and though its all fun and should be a joyous time ... all I feel like doing is ... working on my novel. Am I nuts? Am I a workaholic? Maybe it's because I feel the pressure to get it done. Maybe its because Michael has been so sick the past several days (cold and flu) and my dern back is acting up ... but I think a poor Christmas spirit for me stems from way back.

Growing up, my holidays were wonderful. My parents made them that way. As a Goodyear employee, Daddy took us every year to the big Goodyear theater for cartoons and candy and every child got to pick out a gift. It was a highlight of my year, let me tell you. I'd plan all year what toy I wanted. You see, we only received toys on birthdays and Christmas.

Mom loved to bake, so the house smelled wonderful all season. We had great tree, filled with those old bubble lights and angel hair that you hoped never got on you, or you'd itch all night. She was always in a good mood over the holidays. I loved every minute of it.

My grandparents were wonderful to come on Christmas Eve and bring a gift, but grandma's cooking was something out of this world. Santa came every year, it always snowed, and I felt loved. It molded my image of how the Christmas spirit should be.

It was years later that Scrooge showed up and ruined the Christmas spirit for me for many, many years. He blew in like Freddy Kruger, Jason, and the Grinch all wrapped up in one. After all these years, I still fight that old bugger.

So ... here I sit again, two weeks before Christmas, trying like the dickens to catch the spirit. The house is decorated, we did get that much done. It twinkles all over the place. You can't turn on the TV without getting bombarded from the advertisers that its time to spend money. But I guess, its a combination of so many things that drags my spirit into one of humbug.

If you have any ideas on how to catch that spirit, let me know.

Blessings to you and yours.

Saturday, December 09, 2006


Today I sat for a couple hours in a model log home, (owned by Kuhns Bros.) in Mebane, NC ... talking to customers, eating fresh baked Christmas cookies, drinking hot cider, enjoying a fully decorated Log Home, and selling Southern Fried Women. Donna and Linda, from Kuhns Bros., greeted visitors to the home with "we have a famous author here with us today, please take a look at her book, she'll be happy to sign one for you, and they make great Christmas gifts!"

Famous? Naturally, I start giggling in the beautiful breakfast nook where I am set up to sign. Famous. What a word, huh? Like ... hardly. Michael laughed and so did I, I've never been called famous before. I think of the struggle we writers go through. The hours we labor over just one sentence. Or the research that drags on for weeks. And, then there's the publishing and the promoting ... oy vey. You can read day after day where I blog about the undertakings of writing a book.

But then, there's always a little sweetness thrown in. Like being called famous when you know damn well that about the only thing famous about you is how your family calls you a "drama queen." I'm famous for that within the confines of family. But the word is fun to hear. It really doesn't sell any books though. What sells my book is first the cover, then the content. Folks really don't give a rat's pittutie if I'm famous. They just want a good story.

Now should I turn into a "Sue Monk Kidd" or a "Pat Conroy," then folks would line up because of the famous author. Many times, the famous author does sell the book first ... the story becomes secondary.

But until then, I'm very happy to be who I am. I'm Pamela King Cable, and I write Southern Fiction. And there ain't no shame in that. Or fame either.

Not right now, anyway.

Blessings to you and yours.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

My Cold Mountain

If you ever get the chance to travel Interstate 77 from North Carolina up through Virginia, then into West Virginia ... do it. It has to be one of the most scenic interstate routes in the country. I've driven it this year, about a dozen times. (Or close to it.)

In the winter, the water is frozen that seeps out of the huge mountainsides in West Virginia. Like a waterfall suspended in time, its beauty is only enhanced when the sun hits it. The trees, though barren, appear asleep waiting for some mysterious kiss from spring to awaken them. Pop in an Enya or a Christmas CD, and it's a virtual Imax theater during that drive, you can be sure.

I spoke in Charleston this morning ... to the Vandalia Rotary. A smaller group, about 20 or 30 Rotarians gathered at 7:30 in the morning. Unfortunately, I was in severe pain during the entire speech. I had twisted wrong in the shower (I know, comical ... laugh) and something popped or slipped in my back. The pain shot through my hip and down my leg ... Michael literally had to dress me. Thank God, I was able to do my hair and makeup after a mouthful of Ibuprofen.

So, I limped in. Put a smile on my face and did my best. Which certainly wasn't my best, but the show must go on ... as they say. But I sold 18 books. So possibly, nobody noticed.

My wonderful cousins, Mick and Donna, were my guests this morning and it upset me that it wasn't my peak performance for their sakes ... but hey, family love covers a multitude of pain sometimes. And it was so great to see them again.

We drove home like wounded soldiers. Michael was running a fever. He's been coughing non-stop, it seems, since last week. A cold that won't stop. My back was only mildly better, but I propped myself up in the car with pillows and more Ibuprofen. Pay attention writers ... it's the price you pay when you take your book on the road. Your body wears out before your book does, usually.

I'm ready to stay home for a while. I think there are no long trips scheduled until January. That's a good thing ... but I enjoyed the trip home, despite the pain. The mountains and scenery are something to behold. I never tire of it. It must be something in my blood. I love the area between the two tunnels, an area called Bland, VA. Which is anything but. It's like a slice of heaven.

Although my favorite part in that trip home, is riding down the mountain near Fancy Gap and looking off to the left and seeing North Carolina from a distance. On cold, sunny days in winter, the air is crystal clear and you can see majestic Pilot Mountain. It's my favorite mountain. It tells me, I'm home. It's my "Cold Mountain."

Blessings to you and yours.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Dirty Santa

Ever play that game?

I took a break last night from endless hours at my computer and attended the Christmas Party for my Women Over 40 group! We meet each month at Mahi's Restaurant in Greensboro, and last night's meeting ... well ... have you ever been in a room with 55 women over 40 in a party mood? The place was flowing with estrogen, glasses of merlot, and Christmas carols sung off key.

Mahi's serves great meals, especially their fish. Our buffet is always yummy. But most of us couldn't wait until dinner was over. Time to play Dirty Santa.

It's the game where everyone brings a gift. This year, all gifts were to be re-gifted gifts. (Of course, some were-some weren't) but it didn't matter ... the end result was a blast. Anyway, everyone gets a number. Number 1 went first and chose a gift and opened it. It was a roll of new duct tape and a book on 1,001 uses for duct tape. Number 2 then had a choice ... she could either take the duct tape and book or choose a new gift.

Obviously, she chose a new gift. Then number 3 could choose from any gift already opened OR choose a new unwrapped gift. It goes on like that until eventually, you've got women stealing each other's gifts all over the place. So many of the gifts were not as nice as others. So when there was a nice gift like wine glasses, or a soft cashmere shawl, everybody tried to steal it.

Here's the kicker. A gift could only be stolen twice. If Nancy opened a gift and Susan stole it from Nancy instead of opening her own gift, then Nancy could choose another unopened gift. BUT if next you stole Susan's gift (the one she stole from Nancy) THEN the gift was "retired."

A woman in front of me had her gifts stolen 5 times! Finally, she stole back her Playboy calendar she really wanted. But I had my eye on a mirror. In my opinion, the nicest gift of the night. It was beautiful. I couldn't believe somebody wrapped it for this party. Antique finish, hand painted frame, nice size, heavy ... a real treasure.

My number was 32 ... and by the time it was my turn, said mirror had already been stolen once by a woman who had decided where she was going to put it. Her friend beside her agreed it was a great mirror. The woman kept it by her chair, half hidden, hoping nobody would remember it.

Then it was my turn. Each of us got to do our 30 second networking commercial before choosing our gift ... so I said, "I want to thank everyone that bought my book this year, I hope everyone has a happy holiday ... and ... I'm sorry honey, but that mirror you got back there, is going to look real nice in my house. Hand it over."

The mirror was retired. It was mine. I think she ended up with Santa Claus salt & pepper shakers.

It's the chance you take playing Dirty Santa.

Blessings to you and yours.